The Challenges Faced By Animal Shelters During COVID-19


Jakub Hałun, CC BY-SA 4.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Aleeyah Slater

During the coronavirus pandemic, many industries and stores are facing shutdowns. Some of the hardest hit industries are: Broadway, restaurants, and schools. One industry that isn’t getting enough attention, however, are the animal shelters. Lots of shelters are having to close, leaving the animals with no place to go. Something needs to be done about this, and fast, for the sake of our favorite furry friends!


The animals are overflowing the shelters, for two main reasons. First, people are stranded far from home due to travel restrictions, and they cannot get home to take care of their pets. If there is no one else who can take care of them, they have to go to a shelter, at least temporarily. Second, people are unsure if animals can get or spread coronavirus, as the information about that has not been clear. This confusion leads to people not adopting or fostering pets, even though they desperately need homes. Both of these reasons are leading to a severe overflow in some animal shelters.


On the other hand, there are many reasons that you should be fostering or adopting animals right now! First of all, if there are too many animals in the shelters, they will not all get the care they need because the staff will be spread too thin. This is not good, as we all want the best for our animal buddies. Also, as the environment right now can be very stressful, animals are a great way to relax. Having a furry friend around can keep you from getting too lonely, and can give you something to occupy your time. For example, getting a dog will give you and your family a good reason to go outside to take a walk, which will help both you and your dog. Cats are also the purrrrrfect snuggle buddies in a time with a lot of stress! 


Even though there is not a lot we can do in this time, one thing that will make a big difference is adopting or fostering animals in your home.